We kicked off the holiday season with a quick day trip to New York City. I haven’t been to the Big Apple since I was twelve years old, and, well, that was quite some time ago. My children have never been. We arrived around 9:30am, parked in the theatre district and had a quiet start to the morning as the tourists left over from the Thanksgiving hub-bub were still sleeping in.
I was in my 30’s when I realized that I am a “city girl.” I love to walk everywhere, I don’t get terribly thrown by crowds and the energy of a big city completely energizes me. I can feel the possibilities in the air. Ironically enough, I’ve never actually lived in a city, but relish my moments in them. I saw this too in my daughter when we brought her to Washington, D.C. for the first time last summer — she came alive. I watched her energy change the moment we stepped off the metro, and a confidence over-took her. The same happened when we were in New York. It’s almost as if she becomes one with the city. Her intuition is heightened and her entire demeanor changes; and she feels it.
My son, on the other hand, is not so fond of cities. More like his dad, he thrives in open spaces, feels safer and more in his element in the suburbs. He loves the idea of a city, but contracts, gets anxious and after a couple of hours becomes quite out-of-sorts. Just like his sister recognizes a city feels like home to her, my son intuitively feels the shift and does not enjoy long periods in the city.
As I paid close attention to my kids this past weekend I found myself momentarily lamenting that I did not understand myself better at their ages. In truth, self-awareness comes through experiences and I just was not exposed to the same kinds of things when I was growing up. I had some sadness as I wondered what my life would have been like if, similarly to my daughter, I had been able to proclaim at 15 that I needed to live in New York? I wondered if life would have been easier, if I would have been more in-tune, if ….Then I realized the silliness of it all.
I was acting as if my life was already over. As if the fates had aligned and my creative ability was spent. I know better! It’s never too late to shift my creative energies. In fact, since the nature of the Universe is impermanence, it’s almost demanded that creative energies shift with regularity. As I put my head on straight about this I also realized that I wouldn’t have really changed anything. Personally, I would not want to raise my children in the heart of the city, I like suburb living for them. There’s also a good chance I would have burned out in my younger years living in a city, as I did not have the understanding of balance and energy that I do now. No doubt I would have gone full-throttle until I could no longer appreciate the things I had once loved.
So it is with renewed enthusiasm that I spend the last month of 2011 examining where my creative energies are flowing and unabashedly changing directions so that my heart and mind are lined up. Most of us wait until about December 30 to undertake this kind of self-examination and then we spend the first quarter of the new year lining up with that energy. I wonder if you’ll join me in beginning this work now. What an amazing start 2012 will have if we remember that it’s never too late to lean into our desires and line up with renewed creative energy!